A lot of us think about the holydays and we think about the evenings when our days let go and we really feel like we can celebrate. Yet, how many times do those holy moment really fall at night? Take the Winter Solstice for instance - the actual moment is around 5:45am on Wednesday morning. I, for one, was very happy when I found this out.
Now, I'm not a morning person but let me tell you why I'm happy about this. Wednesday is going to be a very, very busy day - we leave this week to visit family, and will be away for a bit. We have cleaning to do, packing and prepping, gifts to wrap.... the list is oh so very long. Add to this that I'm working longer hours this week to prep for the time I'll be away and at the end of the day it all adds up to the usual equation of Lots to Do and Very Little Time to Do It.
So, knowing as I do that the moment of the Solstice is a mere 15 minutes(ish) earlier than I usually wake up during the week, I now have a built in window for meditation and reflection that just had 15 minutes added to it. My morning schedule is this:
Wake up to my alarm
Lay in bed and breathe deep for a moment
Get up, stand by the window, and watch the morning
Meditate - connect and renew and prep myself for the day
Get ready for work and head out into the world.
Tonight I'm prepping my kitchen altar for ceremony. Tomorrow, my alarm will go off 15 minutes early. The coffee will be brewing (yay programmable technology) and my offering will be waiting at the altar. I'll have 15 minutes extra to greet the Solstice, to meditate and make my offerings and hold my rite.
It doesn't sound like a lot, but knowing that I have time now set aside for this in the morning before the stress of the new day starts building and delays and setbacks change my timeline for the day, in the morning after a good night sleep has released the stress of yesterday... it means that I can truly celebrate the return of the light, the beauty of the Solstice, and take that calm with me through the day.
My offerings are simple, the ceremony will be short, but I will have time to reflect on time, on light, on the Turning of the Wheel and what that means to a hedgewitch and her land base in New England.
May the Solstice bring you joy!